Some of the most admirable traits about Joan Rivers were her incredible work ethic and her keen sense of responsibility when it came to the host of employees who relied on her for their income. If you've seen the documentary Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work, you know what I mean. Stories also abound regarding her kindness and generosity. My Joan Rivers story is just a little one, but Liza and Cranky Beauty Pants think I should share it with you, lovelies.
that time i met the incomparable joan rivers
I met Joan Rivers in late June at The Shopping Channel in Mississauga, ON. Our paths literally crossed in the studio as she completed her two-hour -- two! -- clothing, makeup and accessories segment and I was about to start a 30-minute spot for a lash/brow serum. "You're so cute," she said to me as she and her CEO David Dangle walked off the set. At the same time, David zeroed in on my jewelry. "Is that vintage?" he asked.
"Oh! Thank you," I said to Joan. "Actually, it's Banana Republic," I said to David, and then admired the long, multi-strand layered seed bead confection Joan was wearing. "I love your necklace," I said -- and the next thing I knew, Joan was taking it off. "I wish I could give it to you," she told me as she offered it to me for my spot. Smart woman -- that's how-to-keep-selling-after-your-segment-is-over 101. (And that style had already nearly sold out.)
"I'm just happy to be a Joan Ranger," I told her in thanks. Joan smiled, stood straight and saluted, then left for her greenroom.
I returned the necklace just as Joan was about to have lunch and rest before her next set. "I wish I could give it to you," she called out again as her makeup artist Elaine closed the door.
After my third segment, I discovered a Joan Rangers Fashion Police badge in my greenroom. Joan had already left TSC to catch a flight back to NYC; David Dangle (he was in the documentary too) was handling her remaining time slot. "She wanted to make sure you got a pin," he told me later when he checked to see that I'd got it. He also mentioned that Joan had plans in NYC that same evening, and that she was due in LA in just a couple of days for a magazine shoot for her new book, Diary of a Mad Diva, and to tape "Fashion Police." Busy, busy, busy woman.
I still wonder if Joan's "You're so cute" was about my complaining in my first set that aging sucks -- how silly to say such a thing when you're more than 35 years younger than a woman with more drive, determination and stamina than most people far less than half her age. Either way, meeting The Incomparable Joan Rivers for those brief moments was a pleasure, and my TSC highlight.
Undoubtedly Joan met thousands of people during the course of her incredible career. Are you one of them? Or do you wish you'd had the chance?
Opening photo: Getty Images. Image of David Dangle and Joan Rivers on the QVC set via Instagram/JoanRivers.